Miami building collapse: Family of Myriam and Arnie Notkin say they are getting calls from couple’s landline

The daughter of a couple missing in the Miami building collapse says the family has received at least 20 calls from her parents’ landline since the disaster. The New York Post reports that Dianne Ohayon noted the family’s latest sliver of hope came early Monday when her younger sister received a call from their parents, Myriam and Arnie Notkin. The family of the Florida grandparents missing in the aftermath of the Surfside building collapse told The Post Tuesday they are still getting mysterious phone calls from the couple’s landline — at least 20 since the catastrophe.

“They’re coming in every day,” Ohayon, 56, said of the eerie calls. “The last one I know about was Monday morning. A call came in at about 5:30 a.m. It was static. It’s the same thing every time.” Ohayon said her nephew, Jake Samuelson, has contacted a Surfside police Detective to find out how calls to her sister’s landline can happen as late as five days after the couple’s condo building collapsed Thursday. “There’s nobody on the line, and it’s just static,” recalled Ohayon, who said she picked up one such call late Sunday. “And we wait and just hang up because nothing changes.”


Ohayon said a caller ID unit on her 48-year-old sister’s phone indicates that the calls are coming from her parents’ line inside apartment 302 in Champlain Towers South, where the phone was next to their bed. “My nephew went on camera to try and find answers, raise awareness, and maybe find out if other family members in the building were also receiving calls,” Ohayon said, referencing an interview he did with WPLG. “We were just not understanding what these phone calls meant. Maybe they were calling for help. We don’t know what they mean.”

It’s unclear where the investigation into the calls stood Tuesday, Ohayon said. “We haven’t heard back,” she said. “We’re just waiting to hear; we don’t know.” It came as the chairman of the condo association at the seaside apartment building that partially collapsed last week in Florida described “accelerating” damage to the building in a letter to residents in April. The building was assessed in 2018 by engineers who found problems, including significant structural damage below the pool deck, according to a note from Jean Wodnicki.

But Wodnicki says in the letter, obtained by CNN and other news outlets, that the concrete deterioration has since been accelerating. “The roof situation got much worse, so extensive roof repairs had to be incorporated,” it says. The confirmed death toll in the collapse of the Champlain Towers South building on Thursday now stands at 11. Another 150 people are unaccounted for. US President Joe Biden said he will visit the deadly condo collapse site this morning.

“Hopefully as early as Thursday,” Mr. Biden told reporters as he left the White House for a trip to Wisconsin to promote a bipartisan infrastructure plan. The White House press office confirmed moments later that Mr. Biden and first lady Jill Biden would make the trip Thursday. Questions are mounting about how the Miami area’s residential building could have collapsed so quickly and violently. The 2018 engineering report by Morabito Consultants did not say if the building was at risk of collapse.

That company did provide a $US9.1 million estimate to the condo association for what it would charge to make “extensive and necessary repairs.” That figure rose as it became apparent more repairs were required under the county’s 40-year recertification process. According to CNN, the Champlain Towers South condo association approved a $US15.5 ($A20 million) assessment in April. The network reported that payments were set to begin a week after the collapse. Friends and neighbors of the building’s occupants held a vigil on a nearby beach on Monday evening, clutching white roses and sobbing as the group burned incense and played the gong. Glow sticks and dirt on the sand spelled out the word “HOPE,” while down the coast, at the ruins of the building, the sound of rescuers’ power tools carried on through the night with no indications that anyone had recently been found alive.

Gemma Broadhurst
I am a writer by profession, and I love to write in my spare time. I am one of the most experienced writer for newspriest. I always make sure that whatever is written on my blog is 100% genuine and true. I am a University of Florida graduate pursuing a Master's degree.

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